MyMommyVents is kicking off the month of October by celebrating “PhenomeMoms.” Each week, we’ll profile a phenomenal mom who has faced tough challenges and managed to come out stronger. Every day, we see celebrity moms featured on magazine covers and websites for their fashion, weight loss, or personal struggles–but we’d like to celebrate the every day moms who are truly making a difference. We’re recognizing the phenomenal moms who sacrifice to give their children what they need, the moms who go above and beyond to do the best for their kids. This month, we’re honoring YOU.
This week’s mom PhenomeMOM is Valerie Pierre-Cadet. A New Jersey native, Valerie moved to Brooklyn to raise her young family with her husband,Jeff. I connected with Valerie, a fellow event planner, and we hit it off right away. Known for her sense of humor, Valerie’s personality shines through in every situation–even while giving birth. Read on for this PhenomeMOM’s story.
Anyone who knows me knows that I always have a crazy story to tell. The strangest things always seem to happen to me. My pregnancy and birthing story are no different.
On Christmas in 2009, my husband and I announced to our families between dessert and present opening that we would start trying for our first baby. There hadn’t been a baby in the family in almost 20 years. This was the news that everyone was waiting to hear. Their excitement was short lived, because within 30 days, “we’re trying” was officially followed by “we’re pregnant!” Talk about quick.
I found out I was pregnant in January of 2010. I didn’t need a pregnancy test to tell me, I could feel it. As women, we’re acutely aware of the minute changes that our bodies undergo as life begins to take shape within us. Not to mention, I had a serious chocolate craving when I’m actually a cookie girl, and no matter how much sleep I got it never seemed to be enough. I took a test for confirmation. Those 2 pink lines would change our lives forever.
I was thankful to have almost a year to process everything that came with motherhood, but what I didn’t have time to process was this itchiness on my stomach. Why was my stomach so itchy? Why was it covered in these huge, like, mosquito bites? Whatever it was, it was not only growing, but making its way to my back and arms. I would later discover via Dr. Google this is a classic symptom of PUPPP’s or Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy. Wait. What? A plague? This can’t be right. In laymen’s terms, PUPPPs meant my body was allergic to my baby while in utero. I didn’t even know this was possible. With the only cure being to give birth, I would spend the rest of my pregnanc(ies) slathered in Benadryl.
As if that wasn’t enough, I also fortunate enough to get pregnant during the hottest summer NYC had seen in long time. I thought for sure I was going to melt. But all of that aside, from a health standpoint the baby and I were well. That is, until I was passed my due date. I did everything from walking to eating spices, but nothing was speeding the process along.
At a week overdue, I checked into the hospital on October 4th to be induced. I was anxious, nervous and starving. Surrounded by my family I realized they all had food and none of them was sharing any with me. Once I got hooked up to the machines the induction process began. I thought to myself, “this is easy”. Fifteen hours later…my screams could be heard on the entire birthing floor.